President Joe Biden will travel to Miami-Dade County, Florida on Thursday to examine the site of the muti-story building that collapsed — leaving nearly a dozen dead and over 100 still missing.
Further, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that Biden will thank first responders for sacrifices and attempt to comfort families who have fallen victim to the tragedy.
“We don’t want to draw resources that are needed in the ongoing search and rescue operations. We will remain in close contact with officials on the ground,” Psaki said in her press conference on Monday.
Earlier last week, Biden approved an emergency declaration for Florida in response to the disaster. The statement provided by the White House detailed that Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will “coordinate all disaster relief efforts which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures.”
The move followed Florida Governor Ron DeSantis declaring a state of emergency following the incident — allowing all available resources to be directed to search and rescue efforts.
As search and rescue efforts continue, additional information about the Surfside building and possible early warning signs continue to be discovered.
Three years before the building collapsed in the middle of the night, an engineer issued a report after inspecting the building and cited “major structural damage.”
However, after receiving the report, the chief building official for the town of Surfside told condo owners and residents that the building was “in very good shape.”
Additionally, the building was set to undergo major construction projects, totaling more than $9 million to address problems that was leading to major structural damage.
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